The lives of 8-year old DJ Maiden and his family have never been the same since a shooting last September outside of the family's Dallas apartment.
Police said Brian Cloninger confessed to shooting the little boy. The motive is still unknown, but the impact of the shooting is felt every day.
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"Every day, every day, because of the pain and suffering, this child had to endure for no apparent reason," said his grandmother, Sharon Locklin.
He's undergone multiple surgeries, most recently reconstructive surgery on his jaw, where muscle and skin were taken from his leg. Right now, he has a feeding tube and a breathing tube.
"Every time I look at him I think about it, cause I know he was like a perfectly normal kid. And now he has a lot going on that wasn't, wasn't there before. So yeah, I think about it all the time," said his mother, Monique Locklin.
DJ, however, sitting on his couch, is healing. It's an incredible recovery.
When you ask him to describe himself, he says, "I like to play sports. I'm strong."
His family said besides the physical impact, it's taken an emotional toll and rocked his sense of security.
"Now when he sees a stranger, he's running because he don't know who's who and then at night he's locking up when it gets dark, he wants to be in the house," she said.
DJ will be back at Children's Medical Center of Dallas in a few weeks to remove the tubes. After that, he's expected to need surgeries well into adulthood.
A trial date has yet to be set for Cloninger, who is being held behind bars at the Dallas County Jail.